The Bolts and the Panthers prospects played a tight third game in the final showdown of the tournament. The Bolts prospects were 2-0 going in to the game and with a win, would secure the win for the tournament. Unfortunately, in the end they fell short.
Libor Hajek opened up the scoring in the first period putting a puck in on a beauty of a cross-crease pass from Taylor Raddysh. The rest of the 1st was uneventful with both teams playing pretty sound hockey and both getting chances. Adam Wilcox looked much more solid to start the game after playing a shaky first half in the first game of the tournament.
The second period saw Ben Thomas taking a big hit at the blue line. He was slow to get up and did not return to the game. A little later, Boko Imama also left the game after getting into his second fight of the game after a big hit on Christopher Paquette. Boko is certainly a good fighter, a big guy with a lot of strength. He’s definitely a character and grit guy and isn’t afraid to stand up for his teammates. His skating needs to improve and he needs to show some offense in the QMJHL this year to make sure he gets a contract and a chance in the minors in 2017-18. More than likely if he does get an ELC, he would play in the ECHL with the Kalamazoo Wings.
Unfortunately, I missed all of the excitement in the second period as there were a combined three goals, plus Boko’s fight, in about a 7 minute span when the stream went down. Boris Katchouk had a hard working goal to get the game tied up 2-2 before going in for the second intermission.
The third intermission was back and forth and pretty evenly played by both teams. The Bolts broke down though as they allowed a back hand shot to get in over Wilcox’s shoulder on a 2-on-1 break with less than two minutes to go in the third. The Lightning pulled the goalie but couldn’t get the equalizer before the end of the third.
The Lightning finish the tournament 2-1 and the prospects will head back to Tampa for the start of training camp this week.